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Celebrating Creativity: Sina Ateş

Depicting issues from daily life through his illustrations and animations, Sina Ateş focuses on the message as well as aesthetics. Inspired by everything from mythology to politics, history to geometry, the artist believes that one should not lose ties with the physical in an ever-digitalised world.

Jacket, T-shirt: Hugo Boss

Pants: L'appart Levis

Can you tell us about your career journey? How did you cross paths with art and design? I’ve always been interested in drawing ever since I was a kid. I express my emotions and troubles, whether it’s joy or rage, through drawing. I still keep the caricatures I did from my childhood. I chose this as a profession and studied Graphic Design. Meanwhile, my interest in computers caused me to put the drawing on the shelf. Between 2012 and 2019, I worked at agencies and realised that the routine of sectoral work was dampening my imagination. I started looking for a different way and went back to my old friend, drawing. I started drawing in dotwork style. I continued working on landscapes in order to get a break from the noise of the city and to find some peace. In 2019, I opened my first solo exhibition Comfort In Chaos. I think 2020 was the year I found myself, with the changes and challenges brought along by the pandemic. You always have an attitude towards the world and what’s happening around you but it didn’t make sense to express these thoughts as if I were dictating them. I thought I’d enjoy it more to express my thoughts with different characters in a fun style. That was when I had the idea for my character, Adem. His arrival helped me start a whole new world. I started reinterpreting current events and our problems in today’s world through his perspective. Since then, his adventure has been expanding.

You create a unique world with your characters and idiosyncratic style. Can you tell us about your creative process? What inspires you the most? My biggest inspiration is the current events. I follow new developments in all areas and on many different platforms. This helps me satirise things that upset me or people talk about in a funnier and more entertaining way. As a person, I feel overwhelmed by the control mechanism this age is forcing upon society. I believe as humans, we’ve lost our bond with nature. Maybe it’s because I read about this a lot. Anyway, in order to escape this depressing feeling, I try to design my works in a funny style. I think it serves me and the reader. I’m curious about life and what’s in it; I feel the obligation to know about everything. So I’m nourished and inspired by a lot of things such as mythology, cosmology, geometry, history of religions, or politics. History is my biggest passion. Reading about the past paints a much more interesting and detailed picture of what’s actually being told. For instance, I can simply be inspired by studying engraving and cartography works of artists who lived between the 15th and 19th centuries.

As an artist who “observes and manifests in an age of crypto,” how do you see the gradual digitalisation of art? Although I’ve recently been using a tablet for drawing, I don’t think digitalism is a healthy development. I believe we should remain connected to physical materials. I was born in 1987, right in the middle of digitalisation. We used to play pixelated games on Commodore 64; then, computers started becoming more powerful and a bigger part of our lives. Now, technology has become more than just a digital tool; we cannot imagine doing the simplest tasks without it. On the surface, it may seem convenient but we’re going through a challenging process of digitalisation where the physical world is losing its meaning. Like every other phenomenon, art is trying to carve a place of its own in this digital world. To give an example, NFTs were a hot topic a year ago but not so much today. Trends are changing faster than ever. It’s become a habit to consume without internalisation. I don’t know what the future holds but I’d like to emphasize the importance of not severing our ties with the physical world. That’s our element.

In today’s world, what’s the secret to creating different and lasting works? This is a very comprehensive topic for me. I think I would say my lines, my message, and the pace of my hand. In my works, I focus on the message in addition to aesthetics. Like all artists, visuality is highly important to me. After all, you stand out with the difference in your lines. But I care about the message of my work as well. I also have to draw fast enough to keep up with the speed of things and to present something relevant. The harmony between these three elements is the most vital part of my job. I believe this brings a deeper meaning to what I do.

What aspects of your job make you the happiest? I absolutely love my job and feel immensely nourished by drawing. As an artist, it’s a satisfactory feeling to use your talents to create something you’re happy with and to present it to people. If you’re also praised for it, it becomes a priceless thing.

Photography SAMET TURKAN Photography Assistant: MELİH ARAN





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